Sunday, January 23, 2022

JT#1's Notes, Thoughts and Observations for Week 12 (Jan 17th-23rd) of Collegiate Wrestling


I've already gotten into it with a few PSU fans over this so I'll be brief. PSU proved why they're the #1 team in the nation. They defeated the #3 Michigan Wolverines in nearly every match, in every position and in every situation.  Hat's off to them and may praise and credit be given because it is due.  Yet I'm not getting and I'm certainly not behind this absolute assurance that so many blue & white faithful have for the BIG 10's and NCAA's.  I'm really not.  They see a 3-1 victory for Berge over Cam Amine, and equate it to mean that Berge beats him for sure at the BIG 10's.  They see a 3-2 victory for Starocci over Massa and conclude that Massa is NOT capable of beating Starocci.  There's a 90% chance that Brooks wrestles Myles Amine twice more. A 3-1 victory, based off of countering a bad shot does not say to me, "Oh, Brooks will be 3 for 3, no doubt, guarantee."  I have no idea why it does for so many others.  I'm not sold that Kerkvliet defeats Parris two more times either.   Amine is an Olympic Bronze medalist and Parris is an NCAA finalist.  Why is it so hard to believe that these wrestlers, as accomplished as they are, aren't capable of making adjustments and improvements?  More power to them IF these Nittany Lions all go all for all against their Wolverine opponents, but I for one wouldn't treat it as a "Can't lose" bet that I've seen so many treat it as.  "This Ship is unsinkable."  Well Titanic sailors, may you reach New York safe and sound, but JT#1 is sending out iceberg warnings and you'll have no one but yourself to blame if you continue ignoring them like you have been. 

I digress...moving on....

Holy Cow Cam Caffey! Did he look outstanding this weekend or what? A 12-4 major decision over Greg Bulsak of Rutgers and a 3-2 victory over Max Dean of Penn State. The Spartans as a whole have made quite a few statements this season & this has been one of them. 

The past two months I haven't felt that Jake Wentzel looked like the same guy that made the NCAA finals last season, but this weekend I did.  A dominating 10-0 victory over Virginia's Jake Keating. I was very impressed with that. 

I knew this was gonna be a good dual & it was. I wrote in my preview that I thought Heinselman might present a problem for Ayala and he did.  Ayala relies on keeping a fast pace, while his opponent slows down.  I knew that wasn't going to be the case with Heinselman. Heinselman is a full tank of gas, full throttle for the whole 7 minutes.  That posed an issue for Ayala. Not something that he can't fix though.  

Sometimes even in a loss you need to be happy with a wrestler's performance. I told those in doubt that Murin would give Sasso a match and he did. Murin is one of the most improved wrestlers in the country.  Gawd knows how many times Iowa has gotten the benefit of the doubt. There's no denying that. Even at times when they shouldn't have, Iowa has gotten the call. I'm not about to shy away from that fact. Yet I will say that had this dual taken place in Iowa City instead of Columbus, we may have seen sudden-victory instead of the 3-2 end. 

Speaking of a 3-2 end, did Kharchla wrestle a smart match or what? I think we already did, but I guess now it's official. We have a new title contender at 165. 

Giving credit to the underdog Hawkeye against the Buckeye, I'll switch things up and give credit to the Underdog Buckeye against the Hawkeye.  Hoffman looked very good against Warner.  I said about Hoffman a couple of years ago I thought he had the tools and talent to be an NCAA champion someday.  Sometimes he makes me eat those words and feel a fool for saying that. Other times, he shows a glimpse of exactly what I'm talking about. It was a loss, but it was a 6-5 loss to a wrestler ranked much higher than him. 

It was nice to see the old Sloan back this weekend. The 2021-2022 season has taken the Jackrabbit a while to come back to form, but a 5-2 decision over Rocky Elam of Missouri? I think he found himself.  Matter of fact, I was impressed with all of the upper-weights of SDSU. Not only did Sloan upset Elam, but Cade King upset Jeremiah Kent & A.J. Nevills upset Zach Elam.  This lead to SDSU upsetting Missouri. Coach Hahn, great showing. 

Fan of both Ridge Lovett and Yahya Thomas.  Great hard fought win for Lovett 7-6 over Thomas.  Take nothing away from him for that, but I question after watching this match if we really ought to reevaluate our scoring system in scholastic wrestling.  Thomas had three takedowns.  That equates 6 points.  Lovett had three escapes and one take down.  That equates 5 points. Does that seem right to you?  Maybe I'm not giving escapes enough credit. This is collegiate wrestling. They are difficult to earn, when you have to earn them.  Maybe I'm giving takedowns too much credit. I don't know.  I just feel that there's something not right about an escape being half of a takedown.  

Campbell's Taye Ghadiali had a very nice win over The Citadel's Michael McAleavey. It's hard to defeat someone that has beaten you twice before and to do it rather convincing on top of it.  

It was very rewarding to see Chris Weiler finally pick up a nice win this season. Not only did he defeat Max Lyon of Purdue, he really took it to him 11-3 major decision.  I don't know why but 2021-2022 has been a struggle for Weiler thus far & to see him wrestle so well this weekend was a treat. Hopefully there's more where that came from. 

As always, more I could elaborate on, but I'll end with this this weekend. Here's to next weekend being another great week in collegiate wrestling! 


  1. so how did lovett get to 7 points?disagree thats like saying a team hits more home runs and still loses should be the winner,you dont always get what you want!

    1. I have no idea where you think I wanted anything other than a look at the rules. The way you wrote that it would almost seem that you're taking it as if I wouldn't have said what I said if Thomas would have won instead.

      I would have said the exact same thing...

      A desirable or a undesirable outcome have no effect on how I feel about this rule.

      If you like a take down being worth two and an escape being worth one, then great.

      But it should be based on the rules, and not whether it turned out favorable or unfavorable